By Stephen Eisenhammer, Senior Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Demand for flights in Brazil rose 5.3 percent in April compared to the same month last year, according to results released by the country’s National Aviation Agency (ANAC). Airlines have more than matched the increased demand, however, with the number of available seats jumping 7.3 percent compared to April 2011.

Domestic flights are at record highs with smaller carriers like Trip showing the fastest growth, Brazil News
Domestic flights are at record highs with smaller carriers like Trip showing the fastest growth, photo by Bruno Jipa/Wikimedia Creative Commons License.

Both the demand and the number of available seats have reached the highest levels since the current form of reporting was initiated in 2000.

Over the year there has been a 10.3 percent jump in the number of available seats offered by airlines on domestic Brazil flights and a 6.8 percent increase in demand.

The rise of domestic tourism has been a noted trend in Brazil and is a result of higher wages and a growing middle class.

Yet, the demand for international flights was down 1.5 percent in April compared to the same month in 2011, a sign of the continuing global economic crisis.

TAM and Gol, the two largest companies, accumulated share of 74.7 percent, 7.8 percent lower than the same month in 2011, when these companies accounted together for 81 percent market share. Separately, TAM and Gol 39.9 percent, 34.8 percent.

The ANAC report highlights the participation of smaller companies in the domestic market grew 33 percent in April, increased from 19 percent to 25.3 percent. Avianca’s share increased from 2.6 percent to five percent, and the Trip (who is merging with Azul) jumped from 2.7 percent to 4.3 percent.

Read more (in Portuguese).

* The Rio Times Daily Update is a new feature we are offering to help keep you up-to-date with major news as it happens.

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